View Full Version : To Break Taboos?

11-16-2004, 05:36 PM
The world is full of many taboos. Many authors break these taboos in their stories. I think someone mentioned earlier, that torture, murder, rape, and child sex is seen in other genres, but rarely touched upon in the erotica genre.

So, my question is. How far do you take your taboos? How young is too young in erotica? What about non-human sex, like veingloree mentioned he wouldn't touch stories about sex with shape-shifters.

11-16-2004, 06:20 PM
For a market that is adult and knows what they are getting I will have a go at writing anything that is between consenting adult parties. For example for a themed anthology I would write 'edge-play' which is where adults engage in very risky sex (on the train line, with potential HIV+ people etc). These are not activities that would *ever* interest me in real life but fiction is fiction, after all.

11-16-2004, 09:44 PM
I like to keep things between consenting adults. I have a love of all things paranormal, so often times I enjoy pushing the species (and specter) boundaries. I also am politically active, so a great deal of what I write has strong political undertones. Like anything, when you are discussing taboos, the bottom line is that a good author can get a reader to swallow anything.

11-17-2004, 06:32 AM
Ok, so where would you draw the racial boundries? I write a lot of high fantasy, and considered mingling my high fantasy with erotic. Would you consider it more acceptable for an elf/human union than a centaur/human union?

11-17-2004, 09:24 AM
Consent implies being able to have a meeting of the minds as well as the body. Centaurs are often thought of as being even wiser than humans, so the specie/ consent isn't so much an issue as considering what your audience will find appealing. If you are writing it for yourself, or as an aspect of a larger fantasy, that's one thing, but if you are writing it as a story to turn someone else on, I think the graphic depiction of anatomy would be a bit of a turnoff, depending on their inclination.

Anyway you slice it, elves are hot!

11-17-2004, 11:00 AM
Do it well, and it will work. I don't have any personal objection to the Centaur/Human, Human/Elf thing. Infact, it sounds great!
Good luck!

11-17-2004, 11:38 AM
Thanks. :) Like I said, this is "virgin" territory for me, and this genre has the potential of offending a lot of people. I just want to make sure I don't go "too far", as I'm known to do so in my non-writing life...thus, offending a lot of people around me.

My wife keeps telling me she's going to draw a line, just so I can see how far I've stepped over it from time to time. :ack

11-17-2004, 05:29 PM
I just submitted a centaur human story -- i kept pretty much to the human bits of the anatomy.

Writing Again
11-18-2004, 04:14 PM
Taboos are always interesting.

Seems the fewer the taboos the more fanatical people become concerning them.

Those who explore taboos, even those who do so in such subtlety it goes unnoticed by most, often have an effect far surpassing their initial effort.

Ulysses was fought in court, Lolita was obvious, the worlds of Gor were not, yet all three have effected peoples attitudes towards sex and the participants. Many people know the effects, but have no idea who the writers were or what the writer's intent may have been, or perhaps even the names of the original books.

Terra Aeterna
11-19-2004, 12:16 AM
Taboos draw a line between the sacred and the profane. I think the important part is how you jump the line. All of us that write erotica jump the line for somebody. There's plenty of people who don't want to read erotica, or (like some of my friends read it guiltily when they think no one else is watching).

On the other hand, I'm thinking pedophilia and snuff probably has the potential to get a writer in trouble. I wouldn't read or write that kind of stuff anyway since I find it repulsive, but maybe that's part of the thrill for some people -- the idea of vicariously venturing into the realms of the utterly forbidden.

I'd rather go bungee jumping again for my dangerous thrills and stick to reading and writing more "vanilla" erotica.

11-21-2004, 11:01 AM
As regards fantasy erotica (probably the best term, since erotic fantasy tends to mean something else) I think editors might be wary of sex between anything that looks humans and anything that looks animal. I don't think there's any problem between humanoids, such as elf-human, dwarf-hobbit, Vulcan-Klingon or whatever. I agree that there shouldn't be anything wrong with sex between two participants who can form a relationship and give full and informed consent, but unfortunately, the most articulate and intelligent unicorn having sex with a human will be seen as basically a horse.

12-10-2004, 12:17 AM
For reasons that are boring and long, I wrote a story last night about William and Dorothy Wordsworth. Obviously it's sick!and!wrong!

So are there any markets out there that would consider it, or are there some places publishers just won't go...

ETA: Did I skeeve people out? Sorry...Maybe it's best to just leave it on my harddrive...

12-10-2004, 07:40 AM
Nah - the rumours have been around for yonks.

12-10-2004, 09:24 AM
When I did the Romantics in English at university, it was pretty much accepted as fact.

12-10-2004, 01:47 PM
Oh good, because I thought I was going crazy. It seemed like there were signs and hints everywhere, but I'm always looking for signs and hints, and my Prof never even mentioned it.

I also think Coleridge and Wordsworth were...well, doing more than writing during their all-night sessions.

Though what I really wanted to know was if publishers would consider not due to the historical people, but the *incest* aspect.

12-10-2004, 03:47 PM
I don't think incest is as much a taboo nowadays as in, say, child sex.

12-11-2004, 05:08 AM
There was a recent film about Coleridge called Pandemonium, which portrayed William & Dorothy Wordsworth as having a sexual relationship (though not W. & C.). Then again, it wasn't very accurate, and a bit too Wordsworth-bashing even for my tastes (I've always found him an unattractive personality).

12-11-2004, 08:06 AM
I very much doubt the Wordsworth-Coleridge connection, meself, particularly since they fell out.

12-11-2004, 10:06 AM
Well, the problem with Coleridge is that everybody who loved him in any way from friendship to romantic love eventually ended up hating him. Southey, Wordsworth, Hazlitt, probably Lamb though I don't know for sure, his wife...he attracts people who care for him deeply and then end up destesting him just as much.

I have no idea why, but I find it endlessly fascinating.

I saw Pandaemonium as well, and while John Hannah is hot and a fine actor, the whole film fell flat to me. I didn't like the Wordsworth-bashing (though I have no particular affinity to him or his poetry), and I really hated the historical inaccuracies. Coleridge is fascinating enough without mangling his life a million different ways....